On Wednesday 23 September, after attending the opening session of the United Nations General Assembly, HSH Prince Albert II went to the Rockefeller Foundation to speak in the presence of business personalities at a round table organized in the context of the Climate Week NYC.
The Prince recalled: “In the months and years in which we have been preparing the post-Kyoto summit, I believe we all know what we expect from the Copenhagen meeting, at least the broad lines: what is urgent is to put a stop to the destructive spiral in which humanity is caught up.” Then He indicated: “We well know that the climatic threat now weighing so unfairly on individuals, enfeebling the poorest people, those who live in the most vulnerable conditions in the most precarious places, while sparing more those who have the means for adapting their ways of life.” The Prince ended His speech by warning: “Will the objectives of Copenhagen be easy to reach? Certainly not! But this is the only way to progress. You, who experience economic competition each day, know it better than anyone else: it is always pressure, not comfort, that gives rise to innovation. In this field as in others, it is the difficulty of our task that will force us to prove our courage and inventiveness. This is why we must remain determined and confident.”
Later, the Sovereign Prince returned to the UN to listen to speeches by the French President Nicolas Sarkozy, the President of the European Union (Sweden) and the representative of Italy.
In the afternoon, after lunch offered by the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, HSH the Prince took the floor at the 64th General Assembly.
The Sovereign Prince emphasized that: “More than ever, the General Assembly must be a ‘centre for harmonizing the actions of nations in the attainment of these common ends' as defined in Article 1 of the Charter.” He then declared: “Several hundred thousand people benefit today from my country's efforts in the context of our international cooperation in the sectors of health, education and the fight against poverty. This is why I asked that our effort be pursued to devote 0.7% of our GDP to public aid for development by 2015. (···) Such aid for development must be accompanied by long-term investments aiming to reinforce developing countries' capacities, in particular through the transfer of appropriate technologies in view of respecting the imperatives of sustainable development.”
Then, the Sovereign Prince indicated: “In recent months, the global economy has been seriously shaken. Despite the emergence of signs of recovery, we must draw the lessons of this dismal year. Globalization of the economy and the resulting interdependence make it indispensable to reform the international monetary and financial system. (···)Together, we must rebuild solid foundations for capitalism with a heart to boost growth and social development. Current circumstances provide an opportunity for us to create a ‘green economy' combining job creation and dissemination of new technologies for a sustainable recovery.”
He added: “Monaco will continue working with our partners, by which I mean each and every one of you, to implement best practices regarding protection, international assistance and reinforcement of capacities with the sole objective of saving human lives. The Principality will also continue responding through solidarity to emergency humanitarian situations, in particular for the benefit of women and children whose vulnerability unfortunately is manifest in the context of crises.”